More on the battle of the bulge… and other stuff!

Well, got on the scale this morning, and it suggested that I had broken a milestone (179, which is the second “turning” I have had since the start of the year). It is a very positive feeling to see that things are finally working out after any number of years of up and down and annoyingly getting stuck above 180. My real “suppose to be” weight is more like 165ish, but I am going to be happy to approach 170 and call it even.

Atkins is a life changer, even if you don’t guy into it completely or follow it like a religeon. It is true that much of it is very extreme sounding (I have never eaten so much steak, back bacon (what americans call Canadian bacon for some reason), salad, chicken, and turkey than I have in the last 8 days. I am literally eating like a horse, and yet the weight keeps going away. I am filled with energy, and I can feel my entire body changing gears into a much happier mode. It is a nice feeling. But I can understand that much of this isn’t entirely a natural situation, and that sooner or later, I will have to allow a fair bit more carbs back into my diet. However, the religeous part of Atkins will stay with me (and it is pretty much the same as every other diet deep down inside):

Empty calories, those generated from sugar and especially things like high fructose corn syrup that just blow your body away with huge shots of almost unmanagable sugar doses. Stripping away some of the carbs (moving from a potato or pasta to a salad or low carb veg replacement), and eating more of what comes naturally is pretty much all in the cards. Soft drinks, high sugar energy drinks (like Red Bull, example) are toast for me, as well as most of my high end coffee habit (I went from probably a pot a day to 1 cup a day when this started, and I am trying to find a way to ween that down further as I go along). All those things are generally bad and must be moved off the daily consumption list.

The most interesting about atkins is the lack of fruit in the intial stages (what they call induction) as they move your body into a state of Ketosis, which basically means your body needs to start converting fat into energy rather than just using the wildly abundant sugars in your system. Fruit is fairly high in natural sugars, and as such, would stop this process from happening. I suspect I am pretty much in this state right now, which is acceptable to hold for a couple of weeks, especially if you are consuming enough calories and protein, which I am certianly doing at this point. After the two week window, I think fruit is one of the things I am looking forward to occassionally adding into my diet, if for no other reason than I miss the tastes.

Now, some of you reading this might be asking “why would someone who is fat but not obese be doing Atkins style dieting”? The simple answer is that at my age (41) and with the length of time that the fat has been on my body (probably 10-15 years), it is very hard to get acceptable and dependable results from just the standard “careful what you eat”. Much of the fat on my body has been that harder, more concentrated fat that is hard to get to break up, andadding activity alone hasn’t really helped out. I get maybe 3-4 hours a week of exercise (hard, as I play badminton, which is a pretty intense sport at better levels) plus I am a stair walker not elevator taker. But almost without exception, I have been able to lose a certain amount of weight on each try, but it comes back quickly and I have sat between 183-184 and 195 for most of the last 10 years. More importantly, I have been my pant size slowly slip up the scale, to dimensions I don’t like (but that many people would still only dream about). I can remember buying jeans on my 21st birthday that were size 28… today that would be more like 36. While I know I will never wear the 28s again, my goal and aim is 32 without overhang (everyone knows the dreaded overhang).

To that goal, I am adding in more physical exercise over the next couple of weeks, working to tone the muscles and tighten up the waistline a bit.

So yeah, I needed Atkins style thinking to really make a change, and now that I have “hopped the fence” and made it past the first few days of craving and stuff, I am pretty much good to go. I do look forward to re-adding some of my favorite fat foods back into my diet, but I have a feeling that they will not be anywhere near as desirable or enjoyable when I get to that point. Changing your thinking really does go a long way to obtaining the long sought and rarely found results.

So I keep on my path for my goals, and hopefully they will come to me over time. If you don’t have a goal, you have nowhere to go. I have a goal and I am heading that direction 🙂

Any other atkins people out there? Drop me a line or a comment, the comments are open on this blog.